Why Me? Dealing with the Grief of Miscarriage or Stillbirth
Dear God, why me? There are children and babies and pregnant women all around me and now my womb is empty. Why did this have to happen to me? What went wrong?
These haunting questions are normal. Your grief and your unexpected emotional trauma are all part of the healing process when you deal with miscarriage. Because miscarriage is such a sensitive issue and not completely understood, this can be a time of silent suffering. But we are here to help. You don’t have to suffer alone…
Experts estimate that over half of all pregnancies end in miscarriage. Other studies state that closer to 75% of all fertilized eggs never become a live birth.* What a startling statistic!
Although it seems like shallow comfort, rest assured that you are not alone as you grieve the loss of your child. It is also true that the vast majority of women who experience a miscarriage or stillbirth are able to go on to have healthy babies. Although these issues are beyond our understanding, they are all a part of God’s amazing plan and perfect timing. Our God in His infinite wisdom always has a purpose for every new life that He creates, but for reasons we may never understand, He chooses to end some lives at an early stage. “The Lord brings death and makes alive; he brings down to the grave and raises up” (1 Samuel 2:6).
The question of “Why me?” and feelings of hopelessness and inadequacy often surface following a miscarriage. The maternal instincts that begin nearly immediately after conception, along with the hormonal changes in the mother’s body, seem to magnify the emotional responses to miscarriage. You may feel alone in your suffering as if no one else cares that this tiny person was here and is gone. You have questions, doubts, and fears, and you want answers and comfort.
While there are many reasons why miscarriage happens, there really are no simple answers to your nagging questions. Over half of all pregnancy loss occurs because of problems with the chromosomes of the embryo, especially in first pregnancies.
There may be no definite answers as to why your pregnancy ended, but God promises to guide us through the tunnel of our grief. “Praise be to the God and Father of our Lord Jesus Christ, the Father of compassion and the God of all comfort, who comforts us in all our troubles” (2 Cor. 1:3-4a).
Often we can emerge from the darkness of grief as a stronger person for having gone through it, “so that we can comfort those in any trouble with the comfort we ourselves have received from God. For just as the sufferings of Christ flow over into our lives, so also through Christ our comfort overflows” (2 Cor. 1:4b-5).
Put your trust in His promises. He will help you through this period of sorrow. Even when events in your life don’t make sense, God’s constant love for you will always be true.
Here is some practical advice to consider as you deal with the loss of your baby:
– Allow yourself time to grieve. This process is beneficial in working out your feelings.
– Open up to your friends and loved ones. Let your spouse and relatives grieve with you. They are hurting as well.
– Name your child. Acknowledge that this baby was a unique individual.
– Gather keepsakes. Pictures, cards, funeral bulletin, special gifts from loved ones — whatever you can hold on to will help you through this time in your life.
– Remember your baby. Light a candle, release a balloon from the grave site, have a prayer for this child, remember this person at special events. Do what is comfortable for you.
– Pray for God’s gracious and healing hand to guide you.
* “Preventing Miscarriage” Jonathan Scher, M.D.